Conversations Over Tea: Gunnar Lovelace
Conversations Over Tea is an ongoing series of interviews between our founder, Rose Goodman, and people who inspire her.
with Gunnar Lovelace
A serial entrepreneur, Gunnar Lovelace is the cofounder and co-CEO of Thrive Market. The common thread in his work is social consciousness; he’s committed to creating a wake of positive change and creating a new model of business that puts human welfare, sustainability, and environmental health first.
What’s your advice for someone interested in creating a business?
Do something that you love. It’s going to take at least three to five years for it to really start to get some initial results, so if you’re not doing something that you’re passionate about and engaged in, then you’re not going to have the staying power or you’re going to have a very tortured personal experience in the midst of cranking the wheel.
What’s your relationship to money?
Money is energy. It’s not inherently good or evil–it’s really just a question of what drives us and what we’re motivated by. We’re extremely successful as a species at generating tremendous amounts of profit and concentrating wealth, and that’s causing all sorts of tremendous challenges. Every major ecosystem is on the verge of collapse and we have all sorts of social inequities.
Business is arguably one of the most transformative forces in the history of our species on the planet. There’s a really tremendous opportunity and responsibility for us to have a much more holistic conversation about how money can be directed towards creating profit and also doing good.
What’s your definition of good health?
There isn’t an absolute way of being healthy. We have the opportunity to take radical personal responsibility and really test what works for us, to gather input and recognize that no one person is going to give us the right silver bullet that’s going to solve every problem we have. We have to use our own personal experiences with that information as a way of validating it for ourselves. I think that’s exciting.
How do you recharge your batteries?
Sleep, exercise, time with my partner, time for myself creatively. It’s really that simple. If the sleep and the exercise fall off, then I start to break down really fast.
If you could go back in time to meet your 21-year-old self, what piece of advice would you give him?
I spend a lot of time afraid and in fear, and that’s because of so much old programming related to survival trauma. Growing up, I had a lot of uncertainty about what was going to happen in the immediate future and long periods of time where I lived off of very scarce resources.
If I could speak to my younger self I would emphasize that everything’s okay, I’m doing a great job, and that it’s all going to work out perfectly. If there was any way I could transmit that to myself so that I’d actually receive that information, that would have had an incredibly positive effect my life.
- Nature Conservation,